Personal Protection Is “Good and Sufficient Reason” for Carrying Gun to Church

Va. Stat. § 18.2-283 makes it a misdemeanor to “carry any gun, pistol, bowie knife, dagger or other dangerous weapon, without good and sufficient reason, to a place of worship while a meeting for religious purposes.” Virginia Attorney General Cuccinelli has just issued an opinion concluding that “carrying a weapon for personal protection constitutes a good and sufficient reason” for purposes of the statute. The opinion also notes that the church, as property owner, may bar people from carrying weapons onto its property, but that’s a separate legal question. Thanks to Prof. Josie F. Brown (First Amendment Law Prof Blog) for the pointer.